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THURSDAYS UNTIL MAY 30 PARAPSYCHOLOGY LECTURES University professors and academics will discuss the nature of consciousness and the mysterious abilities of the human mind at the Golden Square Bookshop, near Piccadilly Circus, London W1, 7.30-9.30 pm, Pounds 5, Pounds 3 concessions. Subjects include: lucid dreaming, ghosts and hauntings, UFOs, human electrical fields, psychokinesis, psychic healing and past lives. Booking and details: Qinetics International, 0181 954 4935.

MARCH 22-JULY 7 DAVID LIVINGSTONE AND THE VICTORIAN ENCOUNTER WITH AFRICA Exhibition at the National Portrait Gallery, St Martin's Place, London WC2, which includes ethnographic items, natural history specimens, portraits, photographs, maps and manuscripts, journals, letters and travelling equipment. The political and ideological background to African exploration is examined together with the work of fellow missionaries and explorers and their encounters with African peoples. Details: 0171 306 0055.


A discussion evening chaired by Dr Jack Cohen at the Royal Institution, 21 Albemarle Street, London W1 at 6pm; tea from 5.30pm. Free. Everyone welcome.

MARCH 29-APRIL 16 EDINBURGH INTERNATIONAL SCIENCE FESTIVAL Events at 40 venues include: a weekend of sci-fi films covering the milestones in film technology; "Megafun with computers", an interactive science show in which children aged three upwards can star in their own pop video and change themselves into aliens; a touring schools programme featuring Skelly, the life-size skeleton, rocket-launching astronauts and buckets of slime; a symposium on breast cancer; a thesis on why whales strand on beaches; and much more. Details: 0131 220 6220.

APRIL 3 SEXUAL AWAKENING: MAKING SEX EDUCATION WORK Medical Research Council symposium for secondary teachers and trainees at Lecture Theatre 1, Old College, Edinburgh, as part of the city's science festival. Speakers include: Professor Dennis Lincoln, MRC reproductive biology unit, Edinburgh, Dr Kaye Wellings, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, and Paul Grinzi and Pascal Gelperowicz, Monash University, Australia, on medical students as peer educators. Free admission but booking advisable on: 0131 220 6220.

APRIL 8-JULY 20 THE CANTERBURY TALES In this touring adaptation by Michael Bogdanov, the tales are told at a present-day "Geoffrey Chaucer storytelling competition" with Brian Cant as the local vicar and bungling master of ceremonies, and Brian Glover as the lecherous miller. The production will visit venues in Hull, Poole, Eastbourne, Cheltenham, Southsea, Crawley, Southend, Windsor, Halifax, Mold (Clwyd), Chatham, Crewe, Yeovil and Sheffield. Details: 0171 580 6794.

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